Travelling with An E-Cig
It is a well-known fact that e-cigarette sales have grown exponentially in the past decade, since their introduction in 2004. As of 2015 there were over 2.6 million e-cig users worldwide as sales have soared. And that is where the problem lies. The public sphere is increasingly inundated with information about the dangers of smoking tobacco, leading to the influx of e-cig users and Vape Juice buyers who make it difficult for international laws and information to keep up with the influx. Some countries still have grey areas, if any areas at all, when it comes to where people can use and buy e-cigarettes. If you are lucky enough to be travelling abroad this year and would like to take your e-cigarette and some of your best e vape liquid with you, then you can find some handy tips on what to expect when travelling, and hopefully some tips to stop you getting fined or even worse, arrested!
Taking E-cigs on a plane
On almost every airline, smoking e-cigs on board is illegal. The only known exception is on Ryanair where you are not allowed to smoke your own e-cig but can buy smokeless ones on board which you are allowed to use on the flight. Usually the reason for not being allowed to smoke on board is the fact that in-flight smoke detectors are often very sensitive. Therefore the risk of setting it off on board, even if miniscule, means there is a threat of ruining the flight for everyone. Not ideal if you’re half way through a flight to New Zealand!
Unlike many would think, the ban lies not in the debunked second hand smoke fear, but in the fact that it may confuse other passengers into lighting up real cigarettes. Often, using a vape on board a plane can lead to a fine of over £200 and in some cases, vape blowing lawbreakers have been known to be arrested.
Where you can vape in airports
In England, Heathrow airport has a designated Vaping area. This goes for many airports in countries where vaping is not illegal and sometimes you can get away with vaping within the airport itself, or at least staff will turn a blind eye (maybe not worth risking though!). However, this is not the case for all of England though, Gatwick, Manchester Airport and Birmingham international all do not permit vaping within the terminal buildings. In the US, Vape lounges vary from airport to airport depending on the laws of each state. When leaving the airport, make sure to ask a member of the airport staff whether you can vape in public, again, no one wants to risk a fine.
E-cigs and security checks
In many instances, back when e-cigs were less well known, people have been stopped by security due to the fact that their e-cigs were mistook for weapons. Not every security guard will be aware of or know what an e-cig is, due to the fact that it is only recently becoming such a popular phenomenon. Many airports have laws about how much liquid can be brought on board planes. Most airports won’t let you bring any more than 100ml of liquid on board a plane so make sure that if you are carrying e liquid in your hand luggage that it doesn’t exceed this measurement. It is also wise not to be charging your e cigarette when going through customers as the use of electronic equipment in-flight can be dangerous. Try packing your e-cig charging equipment in with your other chargers and electronic devices.
Where Vaping is and isn’t legal
With ever-shifting views on the use and selling of e-cigarettes, it is becoming clear that many countries officially ban e-cigarettes, but don’t enforce this rule. Saudi Arabia for instance, bans the use of e-cigs but the population are becoming frequent users, meaning that this law is not enforced. Many countries in Africa have no clear rules on vaping whilst it seems to be a grey area in countries such as Vietnam and India. In America the law differs from state to state whilst Dubai, Qatar and Saudi Arabia often confiscate them on arrival. The best piece of advice? Always check with airport staff before entering a country.